Thursday, March 30, 2006


The Tactical Airbrone Reconnaissance System (TARS) is being used to provide photo recon for our troops in Iraq.
BALAD AIR BASE, Iraq (AFPN) -- A little-known capability here is paying big dividends for warfighters on the ground. Air National Guard F-16 Fighting Falcons from the 332nd Expeditionary Fighter Squadron are using the Theater Airborne Reconnaissance System, or TARS pod, to provide high-quality still imagery to ground commanders to help them achieve their tactical objectives.

The TARS pod, mounted on the centerline of the F-16, contains a sophisticated photographic system that records high-resolution images which can be exploited by users on the ground within hours of landing. Because the pod is mounted on the centerline, the aircraft can still carry a variety of munitions under the wings to perform close air support for ground forces and air-to-air missions if necessary.

TARS, a capability exclusive to the Air National Guard, is being used in a variety of ways in Iraq. One of these is to help ground forces with their mission planning, providing them up-to-date imagery of roads, houses, structures, neighborhoods and other areas of interest.

"Many of the images being used by the ground guys for mission planning are Falcon View satellite images that are often dated," said Lt. Col. Kerry Gentry, commander of the 332nd and member of the New Jersey Air National Guard. "A lot can change over time in terms of new construction of buildings and roads. We can provide our JTACs and other ground forces up-to-date, high-resolution images they need to execute their missions."

Just how good is the resolution? The TARS pod is the equivalent of a 36-megapixel camera, said Staff Sgt. Jeremy Fisher, 332nd Expeditionary Aircraft Maintenance Squadron and a guardsman from the 122nd Fighter Wing in Fort Wayne, Ind.

To put that in perspective, most handheld digital cameras range between two and five megapixels. The resolution of the TARS images, however, is only one of its advantages.

(emphasis mine)

Our folks in Iraq are rewriting the book on how to fight a war. They're kicking ass and taking names, but you won't hear much about it from the folks who pass themselves off as the news media. I guess it'll be up to the blogosphere to get the word out.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


OK, let's cut through the B.S. They're illegal aliens. They're not immigrants, migrants, or any other euphemism. They're here becuase they broke the law. Period. For an interesting perspective on the subject of illegal immigrants, check out Davide Yeagley's latest piece on the subject.
Illegal immigration is an affront to the very idea of nationhood. That Mexicans have found allies (i.e., avaricious businessmen) inside America is no cause to honor them, no cause to justify them, and no cause to reward their aggression. It is cause rather to imprison the businessmen as the traitors and treasonists they really are. They should be deported to Mexico, forever. And every law Congress changes to accommodate the businessmen and the Mexicans is evidence against the Congressmen as well. They are the fundamental traitors of the country. They should be imprisoned for life.

The Mexicans have taken their own risks, willfully. America owes them absolutely nothing. If there is a concern that American produce will fail without Mexican labor, then let it fail. Let Americans plant their own onions, or do without a little extra flavor on their hamburgers. No foreigner has the right to force himself on another country, and to expect full rights as a citizen, just by being there. This is the most arrogant attitude in the history of nations. To sanction it, to encourage it, is suicidal for the nation that would indulge such "irrationality."

As usual, Yeagley pulls no punches. As well he shouldn't. This is a serious subject. The future of our country depends on how we handle it. The time to handle it is now.

Monday, March 27, 2006


Our military has has been in a state of transformation in recent years. The war on terrorism has accelerated change. Necessity, as the saying goes, is the mother of invention. Check out this example of innovation:
Air Force drops more data than bombs in Iraq

Reconnaissance work from above lets military branch, ground troops work more closely.

BALAD, Iraq -- Air Force Lt. Col. Pete Gersten, an F-16 squadron commander here, is presiding over air operations that have surprisingly little in common with those of other recent wars.

In the 1991 Persian Gulf War, or the bombing campaigns in Bosnia and Kosovo in the 1990s, Air Force B-2 bombers commonly flew 8,000 miles to drop their payloads. These days, fighter jets based at Balad air base, in Iraq's Sunni Triangle, sometimes drop 500-pound bombs just two miles from the fences and watchtowers that surround the base.

Gersten says he spends most of his time in the cockpit of his F-16 helping U.S. troops below with reconnaissance and intelligence. He recently helped track an automobile for half an hour through the streets of the northern city of Mosul before the suspected insurgents driving it were apprehended. Piloting a high-performance aircraft while keeping an eye on traffic in a busy city was "a surprisingly complicated mission," he said.

The F-16s, with sensors and imaging devices, are also proving useful at detecting roadside bombs -- and sometimes at bombing the insurgents planting them. Air Force planes also are being used to patrol oil pipelines, electricity transmission lines and convoy routes. As a result, most of the Air Force's time aloft is being devoted to what it considers nontraditional missions.

Friday, March 24, 2006


Here's some good stuff for your reading pleasure.

Dr. David Yeagley addresses the plight of a religious "criminal" in Afghanistan, and the news media's hypocrisy in covering the story.

La Shawn Barber rips a study designed to validate the liberal conventional wisdom about the value (or lack thereof) of fathers.

Bill Tierney looks at the Saddam tapes, and how the media has dropped the ball in covering them.

Christopher Hitchens -- that notorious (insert sarcastic tone here) right wing extremist -- points out how the war in Iraq is not a distraction from our war with al Qaeda.

Jonah Goldberg looks at our reasons for invading Iraq. He also descibes one well-known Washington press corps member as " that thespian carbuncle of bile." I'll give you three guesses who he's talking about.

Thursday, March 23, 2006


I got a tip from a reader that there was a new development in the Alberto Martinez case.
Hearing set for suspect in 'fragging'

Chester - Military officials have set a court date to consider more charges against the man suspected of killing 1st. Lt. Lou Allen and his friend, Capt. Phil Esposito of Suffern.

A native of Chester, Allen, 34, was killed with Esposito, 30, on June 7 by an explosion allegedly detonated by Staff Sgt. Alberto Martinez, a supply specialist with their unit. All three were deployed with the New York National Guard's 42nd Infantry Division in Tikrit Iraq.

The deaths are considered the military's first "fragging" case in Iraq. Fragging is military slang for when a subordinate intentionally kills a superior during a time of war.

An Article 32 hearing to review the two charges of premeditated murder against Martinez, 37, of Troy, was held in Kuwait in the fall. A second Article 32 hearing will be held on April 3 at Fort Bragg in North Carolina to review additional charges, including failure to obey orders and unauthorized sale, loss, damage, destruction or wrongful disposition of military property.

In particular, Martinez is alleged to have wrongfully disposed of printers and copiers to an Iraqi national. The hearing is expected to begin at 9 a.m.

(emphasis mine)

This development is in line with the info I was getting from my second-hand, but reliable, source. It's looking like Martinez is just a crook who committed murder to avoid punishment.

It's worth noting that Google News only has ten hits for a search for "Alberto Martinez" and "Iraq." Would that be the case if Martinez appeared to have an ideological motivation for his crime? I wonder.

For more background on the case:
Soldier charged in slaying of Army officer from Suffern to face more charges

Monday, March 20, 2006


OK, this picture was taken at the demonstration I posted about earlier. I thought it was so strange that it needed it's own post. It also needs a caption. Any ideas?


There's no way that the antiwar crowd would let the day go by without some sort of demostration. The Northeast Peace and Justice Action Coalition planned a big one for today to take place in Albany. According to their website, the plan was this:
We will surround the Federal Building in Albany in protest of the 3rd Anniversary of the War.

The demonstration was scheduled to run from 4-6:00 p.m. I drove by at 5:15. There were several dozen protestors there--a couple hundred short of what they would need to surround the Federal Building. It was on the cold side, so I guess only the most dedicated showed up. I figured I'd take a few pictures for my scrapbook (click on the image for a larger version).

And don't forget to tax the rich!


My definition of abject stupidity: too stupid to know how stupid
you are. A good synonym for abject stupidity: celebrity.
Peace just a breath away, says Sharon Stone

A peaceful co-existence between the peoples of the
Middle East is but a breath away, Hollywood star Sharon
Stone said after a highly publicized visit to Israel.

"It feels to me that we have an opportunity ... to choose
understanding in a new way," she told a press conference
in Paris when asked about her trip.

"And it really is just a breath. It's just an agreement that's
just a breath. We are not far apart. We can choose to have
this alternative kind of growth that is a collective nuance of

"We are just that breath away from a peaceful co-
existence," she added after her visit to Israel as a guest of
the Peres Center for Peace, a foundation run by Nobel
laureate and former Israeli primeminister Shimon Peres.

"Not that far apart," are we? Notwithstanding our minor
disagreements concerning the existence of Israel and the right of
its people to live. Yeah, just a breath, Sharon. Dumbass.


h/t: Drudge


In a column on, retired Navy CPO Jeff Edwards examines our national will in regards to the war in Iraq. He asks whether the cost of what we are trying to achieve there is too high. Is even one American life too high a price to pay?
I want to agree with this idea; I really do. The idealist in me wants to shout from the rooftops that even one fallen Soldier is too many. Even one drop of spilled blood is too much. But the realist in me knows that such a declaration amounts to saying that I will pay no price for freedom. I will risk nothing for liberty. I will accept equality and justice if they come to me without cost, but I am unwilling to sacrifice anything to obtain or defend them.

No doubt the antiwar left will focus on the number of lives lost in the war as they hit the streets for their protests today. Edwards' column puts the casualty statistics from the war into perspective. You can read it here.

Friday, March 17, 2006


"What is a moderate interpretation of (the Constitution)? Halfway
between what it says and halfway between what you want it to say?"

-Surpeme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Which best describes your blogging habits?

1. I blog exclusively during the workday from my workplace.

2. I only blog from home during non-work hours.

3. I blog from home and work, during the workday and on my own

4. I blog from home and during the workday, but I leave work
to post from a remote location (internet cafe, library etc.).

5. I work at home and blog whenever I damn well please.

6. None of your damn business! Now quit asking stupid questions
and post something critical of Hillary Clinton!

I'm kind of curious as to how and where bloggers do their thing.
Feel free to leave your answers in the comments section. If your
blogging M.O. doesn't fit into any of the above categories, I'd be
interested to hear about it too.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006


So, Sen. Russ "Free Speech Control" Feingold wants to censure
President Bush. I shouldn't be surprised. That's actually kind
of tame compared to all the impeachment talk that has been going
on amongst the far-lefties. In a way, I'm actually somewhat happy
about Feingold's censure talk. We can all learn a valuable lesson
from this type of behavior:

Terrorists have attacked our country and its interests. Thousands
have been killed so far, and there have been indications that the
terrorists would like to acquire WMD's for use on U.S. soil. The
terrorists have shown they will not hesitate to kill innocents,
including children (like they did in Beslan). They have also shown
a willingness to die in order to advance their goals.

President Bush has shown time and again that he is willing to use
any legal means at his disposal--the military, intelligence,
security, and law enforcement--to stop the terrorists in their

The Democrats in Congress have shown that they are willing to use
any legal means--the courts, censure, and impeachment--to stop
President Bush in his tracks.

Even though I haven't been happy with President Bush on a number
of issues (immigration, "No Child Left Behind," the prescription
drug plan), the alternative is so totally unacceptable it defies
description. Thanks for making my choice easier come election day,

Monday, March 13, 2006


Retired Lt. Col. Gordong Cucullu has an excellent column at
Frontpage Magazine today. This one is a must-read:

"Whenever liberals dislike or distrust anything, they label it as
stupid. Hence Ronald Reagan was a buffoon, Bush a moron, and
today's soldiers are called ignorant, incompetent, and incapable
of finding employment anywhere other than in a military
establishment that will recruit anything with a pulse as long as it
will kill. It is the ultimate in sophomoric snobbery from a bunch
of moral and physical cowards who are content to slop at the trough
of freedom that is filled by the blood and sweat of patriots they

In fact today's soldier is a cut above any that the country has
produced, including the properly honored 'greatest generation' of
the Second World War. The troops who bravely crossed the beaches
at Normandy were young conscripts, average age 19. Few had
graduated high school. They accomplished the mission given them
and won the war. Today's soldiers patrolling remote Afghan
villages, crowded Baghdad streets, Columbian jungles, and Abu
Sayeff strongholds in Mindanao are older, better educated, more
mature, and more technologically savvy than any of their
predecessors. They are accomplishing a more complex mission
equally effectively. And they are winning this war."

You can read the rest here.

Monday, March 06, 2006


As I wrote in this post:
Are we trying to use a 19th century mindset to deal with a 21st century problem? I think it may be time for a new paradigm.

Retired Lt. Col. James Carafano, a former professor of history at West Point spelled out one of the things we need to change about the way we do business in this column:
The controversy over whether the president has the power to authorize the National Security Agency to monitor international communications with terrorists obscures a simple fact: The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) is no longer adequate.

Passed in 1978, FISA didn't anticipate the development of global communication networks or advanced technical methods for intelligence gathering. Congress should amend FISA to provide for programmatic approvals of cutting-edge technologies -- including automated monitoring of suspected terrorist communications.

While pundits and politicians are already passing judgment on the president's actions, many of their comments are premature. Not enough is known yet to justify many of the factual assertions and legal conclusions being offered. And, because of the highly classified nature of the methods used in this particular program, the only proper forum for reviewing these actions in detail is in the appropriate congressional committees with suitable safeguards for national security and with the full disclosure of all relevant documents and briefings by the Bush administration.

Reforming FISA is a great, and necessary, first step. Wouldn't it be nice if our congress-folks could put aside their games of political "gotcha!" long enough to get it done? Unfortunately, 2006 is an election year. I'm sure they have more important things on their respective plates right now. Maybe they'll reform FISA next year. If we don't get nuked first, that is.


Me!!! That's right folks. I consider myself a big winner on Oscar
night. I'm a winner because I didn't waste hours of my life
watching Hollywood honor itself. Instead, I watched A&E's marathon
of "Dog the Bounty Hunter." I spent hours watching self-
destructive drug addicts winding up with a pair of stainless steel
handcuffs as a reward for their efforts. As opposed to the Academy
Awards, which gives such people a gold statue.

One thing I did miss, however, was the opportunity to learn that
"It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp." Apparently it isn't easy being a
thug who lives a parasitic life off women who work in the sex trade.
I never would've guessed that. Where's the justice in this world?

Thursday, March 02, 2006


A recent poll conducted by CBS news (the fake National Guard memo
network) showed that only 34% of Americans approve of the job that
President Bush is doing. Another recent poll showed that only 28%
of Americans could name two of the five rights guaranteed by the
First Amendment to the US Constitution.

More than six in ten Americans think the president is doing his job
poorly. More than seven in ten are idiots. Depressing. I'm at a
loss as to which is more depressing. I was already depressed.
This doesn't help.

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